Oceanfront Property in Arizona: Road Trip to Miami

Odometer (Legend):  543,818


Odometer (Vigor):  105,755


Odometer (ILX):


Trip Distance:  164 Miles


I’m really giving you all quite the summer 2016 vacation!  It seems only fitting that this weekend’s destination is as much of a vacation spot as last week’s (“Florence“).  Miami, Florida would have been a stretch for a weekend drive – some 2,363 miles from home – not quite close enough for a day-trip.  But Miami, Arizona is.  And it’s been about 5 years since I last talked about that little spot on the map, in October 2011.  So let’s go back and take a look around.


Like most of the towns in Arizona’s wild western frontier, Miami got its start in the mining industry in the 1870s.  The hills of the surrounding area were rich with copper, and prospectors flocked to be a part of the industry in those early years.  Miami proper was founded in 1907 and tracts of land were officially sold for development after the first train arrived there in 1909.  Within a year, there were about 1,300 people calling it home.  Interestingly enough, 100 years later, that population had only grown by about 500 people.


Today, Miami is a quiet (and even run-down) little community that while only 77 miles from the hustle and bustle of urban Scottsdale, feels like stepping back in time a century or so.  My friend Rob decided to join me for the drive.  It took us only about 90 minutes to get to Miami from my home – straight east on US Highway 60 and through a pass in the Superstition Mountains in my ILX.  Along the way we stopped in a similarly time-warped community called Superior.


Most of Miami is pretty run-down.  The residential side-streets – many of which are so skinny they’re one-way – have poor pavement conditions and steep grades.  The small homes are sad, with crumbling foundations and stair steps.  Most have chain link fences around their yards and “NO TRESPASSING” signs in abundance.  One particular such sign was kind of entertaining.  “Do I have to speak to you in 12 gauge?” with the image of a gun.  Real friendly neighborhood over there!


A friend had recommended some Mexican grub so we made our way down to Guayo’s El Rey restaurant.  We happened to time our arrival right when church let out, apparently.  The place flooded with hungry (but well-dressed) lunch-goers as soon as we’d been seated.  “Anything to drink?” asked the waittress.  “Sure, a Diet Coke,” I said.  Before she even turned to Rob to ask for his beverage order, she’d walked away.  She brought back a pitcher of Diet Coke for both of us.  I guess she figured we both wanted the same thing!  At least the food was delicious.


Miami’s Sullivan Street is the main thoroughfare – or was, at least, until the current US Highway 60 was put in a block to the south.  The owner of one antique store that Rob and I visited told us that Miami was once home to 30 brothels during its boom.  I enjoyed walking through a few of the historic shops.  I was surprised to come around the corner in one of them and see the front end of a 1950 Buick in there:  The exact same car that my Grandpa Hugie owned in 1954.  I’ve blogged about it here.


Unfortunately, that Buick (or piece of it, anyway) wasn’t for sale but I left my contact information with the store owner in case they ever decide to part with it.  Rob and I cruised back to civilization after enjoying a few minutes on Memory Lane.  Thanks for being a part of the adventure!

We got a kick out of how the road stripes lead right up to the front door of the Pinal County Administration Building in Superior


Sullivan Street, Miami


These railroad tracks just end!


I read this as “Slow Children At Play.”


Overlooking Miami from someone’s driveway


Don’t try and eat at Guayo’s El Rey on a Wednesday!


This is the combo #1.  Shredded beef taco, enchilada, and a refried bean tostada.  Are my food connoisseurs in the blog audience happier with this than they were with my buffalo chicken bites last week?


ILX parked on Sullivan


Making friends with a “fry guy” statue


Rob checking out the wares inside the antique shop


The soda fountain isn’t open yet


Headed back toward Phoenix via US 60


Queen Creek Tunnel (1952)


What did you think of my new T-shirt?


Couple other news bits!  You all remember that 1993 L sedan I had for about a year?  It’s been in Florida for a few weeks now and it’s getting a full restoration, courtesy of my friend Alan.  Follow his “Build Thread” here!


Alan at work!


My brother Bentley sent me a progress picture yestererday showing the new leather he’s installing in my NSX.


Thanks to my friend Erik for sending me this awesome calendar featuring European Domestic Market Hondas!


Finally, a few have asked for a more thorough recent video of the Legend.  I pulled it out on Saturday for a cruise and filmed 11 minutes’ worth of action for you.  I’m going to leave this “Unlisted” instead of public since I realize that it makes it look like I ran a stop sign at 6:30.  In the words of the movie Clueless, “I totally paused!”

Have a great week!

24 Responses to “Oceanfront Property in Arizona: Road Trip to Miami”

  1. That combo #1 is going to catch up with you if you don’t start your marathon training. 😳😜 I will have to watch your Legend video but must first pour up a pitcher of Diet Coke on ice.

  2. Combo #1… approve!

  3. Fantastic story as always, Tyson!

    1. That little town just somehow reminds me of Radiator Springs. You know, from the movie. Maybe not so run down but a place time forgot.

    2. Lunch combo approve!

    3. That is some nice leather work on the NSX seats. Really nice!!

  4. 30 brothels! Must have been quite a bustling wee town back in the day. The antique shop looked pretty neat, buy anything? And yes, love the T-Shirt!

    • Hey Adam, sadly I didn’t buy anything! There were some neat old license plates and other automotive memorabilita (gas pump stuff, service station signs). Someday I will have a garage I can deck out in those kinds of artifacts!

  5. When are you driving down to the real Miami?? 😉

    • Funny you would ask. I was just exchanging texts with Jason Pawela of Driven for Drives about that today. We are going to drive to Key West next year. So maybe I’ll stop in Miami on the way.

  6. Where did you buy the t-shirt you had on?

    • That was a limited time offering from a website called “TeeSpring.com.” My friend Ami told me about it (I think) and so I ordered one right away. I went to the website just now and it appears the deal has already concluded. Bummer!

  7. This food snob (me) approves of the taco/enchilada/tostada meal. MUCH better. We’ll never speak of those buffalo bites again…

    Cool road trip (Miami looks like the setting of an X-Files episode), and the video was great. Glad to see a little more of the old coupe! When you say it’s feeling tired, though, what’s the issue? Not revving freely?

    • Yeah, I don’t know why the word “tired” came to mind, but the car’s behavior is pretty much as would be expected – a little lethargic compared to the high-revving and spirited GS-R and ILX. It’s not really apples to apples. If I had to choose a vehicle to take across the country tomorrow, the Legend would be the inevitable choice. Which reminds me, I should get it in for an oil change before September’s 4k+ mile drive to GA & back.

  8. Joshua L Says:

    Hi Tyson! I saw the video of review your Legend coupe, it looks brand new and very clean. Yay finally that there have closing caption on YouTube video and I understand everything. When are you going drive your Legend coupe to Georgia? I can’t wait to see more miles on your Legend coupe. I hope you are doing well! 🙂

    • Hey Josh, thanks so much for reading (and watching). The Georgia trip is Sep 14-18 and will be about 4,000 miles round trip. I’m looking forward to it!

  9. Tyson you know it far cooler out in Sunrise then Miami especially this time if year. If I had the time that’s where I’d be headed…

    Curious about the NSX seat restoration does your brother do this as a business or is he just a talented good brother?

    Stay cool out there…

    • Mmm, Sunrise. Now you’re talkin! Let me add that to my list soon. The good news is that this week I’m getting a reprieve from the heat — twice. I’m at Sky Harbor headed to Milwaukee for one night. Then this Friday I’m driving out to San Diego for a couple days. I’m way overdue for some beach time :). As for the NSX resto, my brother does work in automotive but not specifically interiors. His business is centered around diesel pickup performance upgrades. But he is VERY handy. I’ve had him do exhaust, interiors, audio systems, you name it….

  10. 11 minutes of Hugie – you should have your own talk show. Glad that restaurant worked out for you. Fun timez in Miami!

  11. Congrats on selling your house! Are you buying that 5 car garage house after all?

    Also, had your ILX not been free, is it a car you would have bought/kept? I’m not sure if you’re allowed to publicly answer that haha, if not email me! My lease is almost up and I’m torn on keeping it or getting something else. Figured I’d go to the master of Acura knowledge and experience. Thanks!

    • Hey Elliot! Well technically I’m still trying to sell my house but my offer has already been accepted on the new one. It’s a time sensitive situation! As for the ILX, no, I probably wouldn’t have bought it. Before the ILX came along I was already planning on releasing the Legend from daily duty, but I was going to drive the NSX more often instead. But the ILX has ended up being a great little car.

      • Oh I hope it sells soon! And thanks for the feedback, it helps! I don’t think I feel as strongly about my ILX as you do with your Legend. So we’ll see what happens! Have a good week Tyson!

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